The way I know it, Alitalia has stopped long ago to put an aeroplane at the disposal of the Pope for free, and they have started to demand that aeroplane be chartered at market rates instead. The Vatican obliges, and recovers the costs by selling expensive tickets to the journalists travelling with the Pope. This allows the journalists in question to stay at the core of the action, and the Pope even comes to say “hello” and have a chat with the boys and the occasional girl during the flight, obviously “off the record” before madness came to power.
I am, therefore, not scandalised for the star cook or the luxury meal, as by the price of those tickets it would be the height of the stinginess to offer beans and tuna fish from the can, with the accompaniment of freshly sliced onion.
I also understand the Pope will have to travel with a degree of privacy, and will have to be able to sleep in total comfort. After all, he is the Pope.
But then this very Pope who travels with all the privileges due to his rank asks that a small Kia car be put at his disposal for his movements in Korea, ostentatiously displaying a “poverty” he does not live whenever cameras are away.
This Pope lives in a way not appreciably different from the way his predecessors lived. He occupies an entire floor of an hotel, causing costs and inconveniences his predecessors would not dream of causing. He travels first class on his own chartered aeroplane, and I have even read – but it must have been a mistake or misunderstanding – that on his way to Korea he kept the entire first class for him, Billionaire-style. He eats the same gourmet food as the others. He certain did not reside, whilst in Korea, in a Bed & Breakfast.
But then, whenever some cheap theatre for the benefit of the gullible can be had he is all for it. From the cobbler to the newsagent, from the wheelchairs to the invalid children, and from the minivan to the Ford Focus no trick is too cheap for him, no stunt too populist, no rhetoric too over the top.
If Francis wanted to practice what he preaches, he would take the bus from St Peter to Termini station. From there, a direct train line would bring him to Fiumicino airport. Second class, if you please, and harassed by the gipsy beggars like everyone else. Security concerns are, obviously, not an issue for the Pope Of The Poor. Who would want to harm him? He refuses the armoured car, doesn’t he? Let the poor around him be his shield. Let him be one of them, among them. St Francis, poverty, humility, and all that.
Once in Fiumicino, he can queue to his check-in for his second-class flight and, once this is done, wait on one of the endless rows of seats until his plane is called. He can have a walk every now and then. Greet people. Embrace wheelchairs. Read some Kueng. Things like that. Let him queue like everyone else, Argentine passport in hand, and take place in the seat he has booked, himself of course, on His favourite travel site.
I know, the leg space isn’t great; but hey, small Kias aren’t much better, either; and where’s the poverty, if one does not share the hardships of the poor? And look at how easy it is: no aeroplanes to charter, no journalists to host, no gourmet tickets to prepare. The humble Francis can have a sandwich, and a bottle of mineral water; or, if he wants to splurge, there’s always McDonald’s, certainly a familiar venue to small Kia drivers the world over.
Once arrived in Seoul, though, Francis is a guest. I understand, therefore, that the bus might not be appropriate. This is where the small Kia comes in, and fits in the picture.
What have we seen of all this? The Kia only, and that one surrounded by photographers. For the rest, this one here is the Renaissance Prince all right. Apart from the fact that he isn’t, of course, and thinking of him words like “boor” come rather more easily to mind.
This is Francis’ hypocrisy. Not in his living as a Pope, but in his living as a Pope and feigning monastic lifestyle. Not in the big apartment, but in having it in a hotel in a shameless show of pretended humility. Not in the first class travel, or the chartered aeroplane, or the gourmet meal; but in the Kia at the airport, the minivan, the damn Ford Focus, and the old Renault 4 he obviously uses – if he does – when the poor walk.
The hypocrisy is mind-boggling. But then again this mind-boggling hypocrisy only works, and brings him huge popularity, because of the mind-boggling thickness of those unable to see how cheap Francis’ tricks are.
I never had great confidence in humanity’s smartness at large. Christ was insulted by the same mob who had hailed him only five days before. Most prophets were killed. People now approve of sexual perversion in unthinkable numbers only one generation ago. But one must say that Francis’ papacy has brought in front of us the misery of the human condition, and the utter stupidity of the greater number of sheep, in very vivid colours.
Alessandro Manzoni famously wrote that the masses are like an ox: dumb, and easily led.
One must recognise that literacy hasn’t changed anything in that.
I always thought I am a rather serene chap, provided with a robust sense of humour which, at times, even manages to amuse others. But I have now discovered – to my dismay – that this is not enough.
I should, in fact, continuously crack jokes at others and myself; because if I don’t, how can I advertise thejoyofChristthatwemustproclaim?
You see, thejoyofChristthatwemustproclaim, and its sibling thehappykokingaroundtoshowothershowhappyinChristweare, are nothing less than… the New Evangelisation!
Gone are the times when Catholics told non-Catholics some harsh truths about life and death, salvation and damnation, orthodoxy and heresy. Not only was this uncharitable, but – far, far worse – it wasn’t even funny! How those dour men and women, those old maids, those professional sourpusses hoped to ever convert anyone is truly beyond me. They should have cracked jokes all the time instead, non-judgementally showing to their interlocutors, in the appropriately sensitive manner, how much better it is for your quality of life if you become a Catholic; not that there is anything bad with not doing it, of course! But think of all the fun you’re missing!
I have, therefore, decided that henceforward this blog will undergo some changes. The extremely serious photo of Pius XII will be substituted for a pic of a guffawing Cardinal Dolan, and I will add links to The Onion, Comedy Central and, of course, the one or other VII light blogger priest who, in the last months, has become so invariably hilarious himself.
My sincerest apologies to all of you, dear readers. A serious Catholic is a bad Catholic. Next time I read about the plight of persecuted Christians, or am informed about the latest heresy or stupidity of Bishop Francis, I will look for the next mirror and guffaw to myself until I feel like a (much) thinner Dolan. Then I will go around with a face like an idiot on marijuana, in order to show the people I meet the beneficial effects of beingjoyfulallthetimeinChrist. I might add a kilo or three of tiramisu’, just to make myself a bit less dissimilar to the Great Guffawer. Albeit to start seeing some resemblance the tiramisu’ should be weighted in tons.
No doubt, I will convert many people
to atheism to my non necessary, but certainly life-improving religion. Prozac needs a medical prescription. Choose Catholicism instead! Boy, it’s powerful!
The same lesson applies, obviously, to you. Do you guffaw enough? Where’s your Red Nose? How many shoulders have you poked today? Do people laugh when they see your face from afar?
And now please excuse me, but I feel the urge to guffaw to myself for five or ten minutes, just for exercise. The people around me, sitting in the bus in the most un-guffawing manner imaginable will, no doubt, be impressed.
Then tell me I am not serious about “evangelising”…
The Pope stated the obvious objection to his own view that one must not proselytize but rather dialogue and “walk with” people: “But, brother Pope, this is what we are doing, but perhaps we are converting no one or very few people….” Indeed! And the Pope’s answer: “But you are doing it anyway: with your identity, you are hearing the other.”
The idea that one can convert others merely by displaying one’s “identity” and “hearing the other” would have sounded like utter nonsense to the martyrs of Korea, who were put to death for preaching the Gospel in order to convert and save souls in keeping with the divine commission. And those same martyrs would probably have not believed it if they were told that one day a Pope would say this to the bishops of Asia: “And the Lord will grant his grace: sometimes he will move hearts and someone will ask for baptism, sometimes not. But always let us walk together. This is the heart of dialogue.” In other words, perhaps you will make converts while dialoguing, perhaps not. But don’t worry: dialogue is the thing! Evangelization has lost all meaning in Bergoglian theology, which is essentially the post-Vatican II Jesuit liberalism of the 1970s.
This is Chris Ferrara’s probably most pregnant statement in an excellent article dealing, once again, with the way the Bishop of Rome refuses to do his job as bishop, let alone bishop of Rome.
It is clear by now the strategy that this man is pursuing: to be what non-Catholics, lapsed Catholics and Anti-Catholics want him to be, but delivering some timid statement every now and then so that the Pollyannas may continue to believe he is an orthodox Pope; in the same way as the Waffen SS believed in Nazi victory in February 1945.
Pope Francis is trying to achieve the demolition of Catholicism as we know it, and its substitution for a vaguely new-age religion of “hearing one another” whose stupidity is only surpassed by the arrogance of the man so humbly proposing himself as Best Pope Since Peter.
I do not know what name one could give to such a mentality, but “Catholic” is certainly not one that jumps to mind. It’s the kind of waffle you could hear from a confused liberal elementary school teacher; not from a priest, much less a Cardinal, much less a Pope.
Francis goes around saying that Catholicism is an option; but he does not seem averse to the audience and popularity coming to him from his having the job that, of all jobs in the world, does not speak of options. It is as if the headmaster would spend his day saying to the pupils that school isn’t important after all, what counts is that they are nice friends people would want to be around.
Shall I, then, blame this obvious old atheist called Francis for the excrement he deposits at our door at least three times a week? Or shall I, rather, blame the brainless masses who continue to feel like they were “his friend” everytime the old nutcase is afraid of being Catholic, or feels the need to say something completely absurd in exchange for 3 days of media excitement?
Dio vede e provvede, says the wise Italian. God sees and provides. In this case, I can only draw some comfort from the fact that God is already providing for a better time… sometimes after Francis’ departure, or resignation.
But how long our punishment will be, and how massive the rape of Catholicism, I can only fear.
Mark this name, you reader from no matter where, because what has been published today will make Rotherham a byname for ignominy.
What is transpiring in these hours is, literally, beyond belief. Duckduckgo “Rotherham” and “child abuse” and you will read things you never imagined; on a scale that indicates more than even a systemic failure, rather a nuclear meltdown.
More shocking details are emerging, as it appears that the ethnicity of many of the perpetrators, now generically defined as “Asian”, was an obstacle to the filth emerging. In XXI Century's Britain, the fear of being called “racist” or suffer loss of reputation or even employment seem to have played a role, in a Country that has now become such a pit of political correctness that not even horrible violence on an unprecedented scale manages to emerge on the surface for who knows how many years.
And as the bomb explodes, other question emerge (or should emerge: this will be an interesting one to watch…). Why only in Rotherham? Is it reasonable to assume the violent people all move to the same council? Is it so outlandish to think that if the police (finally) digs deep into this, it will turn out Rotherham was only the tip of the iceberg?
Finally, let me say two or three words about the institutions involved: after the way the Church has been crucified for decades I know fully expect – nay, demand!* – that henceforward every Policeman and every council worker, particularly if working with children, be seen as an aider and abetter of child abuse of the worst kind, in a scale and horror beyond imagination.
This, of course, without considering the ethnicity involved in this particular scandal. Can't wait to hear all those ready to throw the Church en bloc into hell explaining to us that this is only a problem of individuals…
Today we live to see the ripening of possibly the most atrociously poisonous fruit of the political correctness and the culture of “diversity” to which this country has literally sold its collective backside. Did we not know that in certain Asian Countries children are routinely sold by the poorest families? Did we not know that in other Asian countries women still die “mysteriously” in “domestic accidents” weeks after the death of their husbands? Can we expect that when non-Christian society are allowed to export themselves en bloc, without correction or apology, the worst traits of their mentality will tend to come to Europe together with them? Do you think Europe is free from infibulation, forced marriages, or (I can say today; not yesterday) what has happened in Rotherham?
How can it be only Rotherham? How stupid must we be to pretend that this problem was isolated, and the tragic, massive failure to act was due to something they put in the water in Rotherham, and there only?
I can't remember the last day I was so disgusted, at least if we exclude the day of the approval of so-called same sex marriages. But again, tutto si tiene: a Country choosing to live with atrocious perversion will discover that the Devil has raped it in more than one way.
I would so much like to tell you that I hope that the Country will now wake up, shake away from itself this self-castrating attitude and recover the sense of decency. But how can I? The sense of decency has gone utterly lost, most people believe in the religion of themselves, and their religions do not allow them to even think – let alone act upon it – that Rotherham happened because of the collapse of Western (Christian) values, a collapse promoted during many decades of willing, self-pleasing, lurid collective blindness.
Sink in the dung, Britain; or rediscover the virtues of your forefathers, the tenacity and resilience that created a beautiful Empire and defeated Hitler, and start working on the recovery of your own very soul.
It's a dung of your own making. Now it's time to start shovelling.
* not really! actually. But you get my drift…
I started noticing it some time ago. At Mass in Rome – undisclosed time and location; wonderful church, but there are thousands of them there only in the Centro Storico, so I have not revealed anything ;) - the homily was entirely, and I mean entirely, devoted to the simple fact that there is no salvation outside of the Church. Which doesn’t mean one who dies a Protestant is ipso facto damned, etc. You know, the whole enchilada.
Whilst the priest refrained from saying that, therefore, Proselitysm is the contrary of solemn nonsense, there can be no doubt the watchful pewsitter perfectly understood the message.
It has happened, in the meantime, on several other occasions. In England, Germany, and Italy. Even in Belgium. Yes, even in Belgium!
It happens now with beautiful regularity, and I start to wonder. Does it happen because the Pope has expressed himself in a heretical way on so many subjects, that it is difficult to listen to a homily and not notice the difference with what Francis says? Or is it because more and more priests – even V II priests, but sound ones – have decided that their duty now consist in guerrilla warfare or, if you prefer, counter-insurgency operations from the pulpit, but without mentioning the main culprit?
I have now lost count of the homilies where some anti-Francis point was made very clearly. It even seems to me – but I might be biased – that the number of anodyne “do not kick the cat”-homilies is decreasing, as a number of priests who were given to such an exercise now feel a duty to say a couple of things straight, implicitly – alas, very seldom openly – making clear who the target of the criticism is.
A silent counteroffensive is, I think, forming. The Pope confuses the faithful, therefore the priest must drive home a point or two. They are no lions, mind. It is very seldom they even mention the man. But this is, if you will, exactly the point. They are saying to the wise: “ignore him; and please understand I cannot say more”.
I do not know to what extent a priest cannot “say more”. But we, the laity, surely can.
Not encumbered with a nasty bishop as our superior, and in no risk of being transferred to some elephant cemetery for being Catholic, we can say it as it is, carrying on and amplifying the message of the priest. And the message is very simple: do not listen to the old man. Stick to sound Catholicism instead.
If anyone of you could briefly report of what happens in his own neck of the wood and whether he also notices the trend I have described, I would be very grateful for two lines in the comment box.
It might be just me. It might be that I read all the bollocks of the man and am therefore more easily led to comparisons between that and a sound homily. Or it can be that the message is being sent increasingly more forcefully to the faithful: don’t listen to Francis, he does not speak for us.
I was made aware of the existence of a parody blog aimed at the effort of a blogger priest. Needless to say, this particular blog is the attempt at humour of some rabid enemy of the Church, allergic to truth and with who knows what other problems. It never ceased to amaze me how judgmental these “do not judge” people are. They must think if they do it themselves is good, if others do it isn’t. Anyway, this chap – or chapess, or unsure which – doesn’t like me, so I followed his link to me and discovered that dissent, faggotry and blind stupidity are alive and kicking in the blogosphere.
I am no “do not judge” type, because mother made me too smart for that rubbish. I try to judge with right judgment, and actually am persuaded I do it most of the times. My very “judgmental” blog has been blessed with some success, and is pretty established in the sound-thinking blogosphere.
It’s not all roses, of course, and many of you have noticed that my blogging activity has reduced to around half in the last months for reasons that I will, as always, not disclose; but my blogging enthusiasm is unabated and I will, so to speak, not “pull a Werling” anytime soon. In short, though I am very unhappy with what is going on in the Vatican and the way Catholicism is being raped daily, I am very happy with my little blog. But is my happiness complete? No.
I miss my own parody blog.
A blog, I mean, created by some dissenter, or pervert, or friend of both to (try to) mock me. Such a blog would, of course, attract a steady readership of reprobates; but as they are lost to the cause anyway this is something that does not bother me. My very own parody blog would, though, have the following positive effects:
1. It would alert a number of people to the existence of this little effort of sound Catholicism, causing the one or the other to slowly understand what is truth and what is lie. It happens rarely, I know, but it does happen. Therefore, the parody blog would result in unintended evangelisation help as indirect result of its crappy pretend Catholicism. God does have sense of humour.
2. It would make me proud as a Christian and Catholic. I wear every mockery, slander and insult caused by my Catholicism as a badge of honour. The idiot creating such a blog would still be an idiot; but in his idiocy, he would still make me proud.
3. It is the ultimate status symbol for a sound Catholic blogger. It elevates you from the mass of the common bloggers out there – even if successful – to the very elite, the crème de la crème of Catholic blogdom.
Will I ever have such a blog, devoted exclusively or almost exclusively to me? Will I ever be able to reach this summit of Catholic glory?
Who knows. God willing, one day I will have this honour. For the moment, I must be content with the occasional closet faggot hating me because he (she; it) is a pervert; or with the liberal nutcase terrified of a truth too uncomfortable to be let alone; or with the VII nincompoop thinking that everything before VII must be expunged from the Church.
Perhaps, one day. For now, allow me to daydream.
The Obama administration wants to bomb the Syrian regime, and in that way unavoidably help its enemies to go to power. For the Obama administration the Government are the baddies, and the Muslim militants the “freedom fighters”. Happily, the military action does not take place; but the stupidity of a Middle East policy based on populism shows to every sensible person that a real idiot sits in the Oval Office.
Not too many months go by, and even the US administration is forced to realise what kind of mistake they were about to make.
It astonishes me that there is no huge uproar exposing the immense stupidity of this administration not only in Syria, but in countries like Libya and Egypt, where they have acted with the same immense stupidity. This US administration proved so stupid that the Egyptian government – a military regime born out of the sense of the Egyptian army and the exasperation of the Egyptian people, and against the will of Golfing Cretin – openly mocked them calling the US to “restraint” in Ferguson. And this, even if Egypt still receives help from the US to the tune of several billion bucks a year.
I would love to read more and harsher criticism of this bunch of amateurs. Only a systematically realistic approach, aimed at bringing all of the Middle East under the control of Western-friendly dictators willing to leave Christians in peace, can bring lasting peace to the region; and be it the peace of a bloody dictator, if the native do not – as they have abundantly showed – deserve anything better.
As it is now, the West will, in time, contain or destroy – more likely destroy at some point – the threat of the ISIS. But without a serious strategic intent of putting a solid lid over that boiling pot of madness that is the Arab world the Western powers will end up playing fire brigades as violent insurrections develop elsewhere, or keep reappearing at some point in those realities – like Iraq – where a democratic solution is stubbornly pursued after now many years of evidence that the recipe does not work.
The US must now start to actively look for a candidate that will – with their approval, support, and bribe money – take control of army and country, arrange things between Iraqi ethnic groups in a way considered fair by his Western masters, and start kicking a few ISIS asses.
The time for this parody of democracy is up, as the suffering of countless Christians abundantly proves. Now that high officers of the US armed forces start to officially expose the immense stupidity of a Middle East policy by popularity poll, the way might in time be opened for a more realistic approach to all things Arab; though I doubt that the current administration will ever see the light on this, rather preferring to continue to be very stupid first, and timidly right when it’s already very late.
Every time you read or hear news about Syria, think that Obama wanted to bomb Assad’s regime. And pray that 2016 may come in time to reverse the course in the Middle East.
The human piece of excrement appearing in the video of the (not entirely proven I gather, but extremely probable) execution of the American journalist James Foley spoke with a strong British accent and is being identified as I write. From London, apparently. Finally, Londonistan is introduced to the world. In HD execution video.
One wonders how many of them are now learning their ropes – or rather their swords, knifes and firearms – in the quasi-statual ISIS territory, a reality that must at all costs not be allowed to consolidate into an established State.
To those of us who have always said that “inclusiveness” of “diversity” is a dream, and the only possible inclusiveness can only be the including of those who want to be like us, the recent events are no surprise at all. Rather, they are the obvious result of such an obviously stupid behaviour, that it can only be dreamt of by brainless liberals who hate Christ and Western Civilisation.
It is, certainly, possible to integrate people coming from outside. Italy – a country that has invaded, or has been invaded by, almost everyone else – always did it beautifully. But it generally did so by insisting on – and favouring the ingress on those inclined to – the assimilation of the newcomers to the ways of thinking and living of the locals. Wisely, more recently the Italian government encouraged for decades the immigration from the Philipines or the Green Cap (the latter mainly black; Italians aren't racists) as the strong Catholicism and the limited language barrier would make it natural for them to want to become like us. It was only with the growing Socialist (atheist and anti-Catholic) influence that a limited door was open to the citizenship of non-Catholic Arabs from the Maghreb; and even they had to be rose water Muslims to accept to live in a Country that did not accept veiled women, and did not give any possibility to raise a family of seven children at taxpayer's cost whilst plotting terrorist attacks.
Britain did. It welcomed the many Abu Hamsas – with or without the hook – and told them they did not need to make any effort to become like us, celebrating an inclusiveness and tolerance with which the people object of the celebration did not agree in the least.
Several decades later Mohammed is the most frequent name given to boys, and a number of violent nutcases – around four hundred very probably already abroad, which allows to presume a reservoir of several thousand “ripening” in the next years – are preparing themselves for a “war” that to them is indistinguishable from massacre.
Well done, British liberal nutcases.
I do not wish for any tragedy to happen, for any woman to be raped, for any man to be beheaded. But If women have to be raped and men beheaded in this country of yours, I dare to hope that the treatment is reserved to your daughters and grand-daughters, to your children and grand children; so that the immense, godless stupidity of the generations of the Sixties and Seventies be visited upon their own blood. At which point one would, in hypothesis, be tempted to ask them what they think of the inclusiveness with which they have made themselves beautiful all their lives.
Pope Francis, unhappily reigning, has made another rather strong remark about the possibility that he would resign, and hinted in that way used by old men who want to be told they will live many years on his now two or three years remaining. For a twist of fate, the statement were uttered just hours before Francis was informed of a horrible tragedy within his family, with his nephew and his two very little children perished in a car accident. As I was praying for the soul of the poor deceased – for two of them paradise is assured, assuming they were baptised – I could not avoid thinking Francis must perforce see in this tragedy another sign of how uncertain our permanence on this earth is. If he believes in God – which I strongly doubt; at least if by God we mean our God – he might have felt additionally motivated to resign when he reaches Eighty and go back to his cobbler and newspaper agent in Buenos Aires.
For this, it seems that no strokes or heart attacks will be necessary, nor the reaching of 84 and the third or fourth bypass surgery. It will be enough, we are told, that he feels he is not sufficiently strong anymore.
I cannot, in conscience, hide from you my spontaneous thought at the end of this reflection.
Please, Lord, please!! The sooner, the better! Before he appoints too many atrocious Cardinals! Before he attacks Truths not only with daily nonsense, but with extraordinary Synods! Before he confuses even more Catholics, and encourages in their error even more of the others!
Here's wishing to Francis a long, happy and healthy retirement.
You see? Don't say I am not the nicest guy…
I had to smile – though not always – at reading Father Blake's experiences with, shall we say, Italian administration. As a proud son of the Country, I think I should say a word or two; my short reflections will also, I hope, ground my argument about why Italians are good for the Church, and we need more of them.
Italy is a Country of contrasts. For reasons which have a lot to do with our historic past, we are a rather surprising mixture of an extremely dynamic, efficient, intelligent and productive mentality on one side and a stunning carelessness, inefficiency, stupidity or outright corruption on the other. Which is why foreigners wonder how the Country avoids sinking in the Mediterranean Sea, and Italians wonders where they would be if the various toxic influences polluting a good part of the population (which have their own more or less colourful names: furbismo, menefreghismo, favoritismo, leccaculismo among others) were expunged with a massive exercise in punishment of bad behaviour that the Country – even those who have none of these shortcomings – are ultimately too kind and gentle, too soft-hearted to implement.
But notice this: Italians aren't a mixture of Northern European virtues and Northern African shortcomings. In matters concerning work ethic, efficiency, and honesty they tend to be either 100% of one kind, or 100% of the other. In a country where many cut corners, the honest ones are truly honest; because they are honest out of deeply felt conviction, not out of fear of punishment like, say, pretty many are in Germany.
This polarity is why Italy has peaks or efficiency coupled with pits of inefficiency. This is why Italy as a Country has vastly outperformed England and France since the end of WWII. This is also why so many Italians are – also thanks to an excellent education system – in a position to escape from a country partially suffocated by nepotism and party card politics and can go abroad, and do rather well for themselves.
The matter is therefore, in my eyes, not whether to pick Italians – there is no doubt in my mind we are among the very best intellects on the planet – but rather in the picking of the right ones. Then Italy has many Pacellis, and at least an equal number of, shall we say, aspiring Bergoglios. Though I am sure even Bergoglio would not have been as bad had he been brought up in Italy, see below.
Italy also has traits eminently suited to the Church: the Anglo-Saxon oscillation between Puritanism and utter licence is foreign to them. Countless generation of dominant Catholicism have left them happily immune to the extremes. Never have I seen a bible-bashing street preacher in Italy, but the sense of sin is much more developed than in feminist England. Feminism, Vegetarianism, Environmentalism, animal rights activism, all these extreme “isms” are blessedly absent from Italy compared to most other Western Countries. These is the kind of people you want. Serene, solid-minded, lovers of (cough) God, Country and Family. Pick an Argentinian instead, and you might discover the man is a rotten fruit of Liberation Theology, an Italian in name only. And no, Italians aren't Puritans. But you don't need long to understand the Blessed Virgin looks at them with all their shortcomings and cannot but smile.
There is more. Italy is a country of people smart in ways foreigners not always see. Father Blake notices the small commercial premises where all the family is more or less – more often less – usefully employed; what he has not noticed is that this is the way the wise Italian parents keeps their children busy, teach them duty and responsibility, keep them away from the street and bad company, and keep an eye on them all the time; it may seem inefficient, but it isn't; particularly in places where there would be no other realistic opportunity of employment. Then, these parents will try to help the cousin, the future son-in-law, or the oldish uncle who has lost his job in the foundry. It's the way it works, at least in the healthy way. It can be worse than this, and it often is. But we must consider the constraints of the economic environment if we want to understand how it works.
More Italians, say I. And let them be very patriotic and a tad nationalist as a people (we are), and utterly persuaded of their own awesomeness as individuals (we are that, too: mamma has persuaded us of this from the cradle). You only have to pick the right Italians, and you can do no better.
As the (cough, again…) Duce said: a people of poets, saints, navigators and transvolators. Sure.
But a people of great saints, too, and great warriors who built huge empires, the Church not excluded. And a people with a great common sense, allergic to fanaticism, and with a great sensus catholicus.
But please choose them wisely.
Another very confused blog post from a rather confused blogger priest, who will not profit financially – as he normally does – from a link here.
The priest in question feels his duty to criticise those Catholics who point out to a very simple truth: Protestants cannot receive a Catholic funeral in any way, shape or form. This is not me, or my cat, or Mrs Johnson down the road. This is Canon Law and, even before that, it is common sense.
Canon Law – and Catholicism, comes to that – is not about emoting; it is about thinking. A Protestant cannot have a Catholic funeral because, with his dying a Protestant, he has visibly put himself for all the world to see outside of that (only) Church outside of which there is no salvation.
Now, it can happen – I do not know how rarely; but I do know that it would be senseless temerity and self-righteous arrogance for anyone to presume he does not need to convert – that the dude or dudette in question does die within the Church, because that very Christ to Whom the final decision is given admits him to be part of the only Church in the last moment of his or her life, and the dude or dudette therefore dies a Catholic and avoids hell. But the fact remains that for the world he has died a Proddie, and therefore he will still – whether he has saved his backside from eternal barbecuing, or not – not be entitled to a Catholic funeral, lest scandal be given.
Is this so difficult to grasp? No. It makes perfect sense. Until one stops thinking and starts emoting.
Then, this person will reflect that the deceased Proddie might have been – as human standards go – a better man, a more faithful husband, a more thoroughly recycling and better driving citizen than the Catholic small crook who died on the same day after a life of expedients, but in the fear of the Lord and at peace with Him. Which, the reasoning goes, would not justify the double standard and make it unjust, or unreasonable, or too “pre-age of Mercy”.
But this is not an argument. There is a double standard for those “in” or “out” of the Church because there is only one Church; and this Church makes – she must make, if she is to be the Church – a very clear distinction between in and out, and must attach to it a concrete risk of horrible, eternal consequences for those who choose to die… out.
In this respect – that is: considering whether one died in or out – how “good” one was is neither here nor there. He wasn't good enough to be entitled to a Catholic funeral, for sure, and he should be happy enough if he has saved his ass; which, seeing his death as a Protestant, is ipso facto uncertain.
This mentality that “goodness”, not right thinking and right choices, entitles one to something – a Catholic funeral but, by extension, salvation; which is the big underlying issue, and the one that gives rise to the prohibition – is a very emotional, very irrational, and very effeminate one. It is the thinking of the emoting wussie, who does not get that adults make choices and pay the consequences.
The atheist “missionary” who spends his life fighting Ebola and dies in his atheism will still go to hell, because the offence to God of dying in one's atheism is infinitely – as in: infinitely – graver than any brownie point his humanitarian activity might earn him in one million lives. It is humanitarian effort without God, and therefore without any charity, and therefore voiding – as far as the issue of salvation is concerned – any contrary argument.
Is this difficult to understand? No. Is it rational? Quite. Is it uncomfortable to hear? You bet.
But this is what Catholicism is: as hard and as beautiful as a diamond. He is wise who understands that the diamond will not become soft for the sake of the Protestant glass. He is a fool who thinks that he is quality glass, and the diamond will have to yield to him.
Those who understand Truth know what the Church is: a barque helping us, wretched sinner as we all are, to cross the perilous sea of our sinful lives and safely reach the opposite shore. What profits the Proddie that he is a better swimmer than most Catholics on the barque if he is still out there, in the cold, swimming? Many a swimmer dies, who thought he had no need for the barque. Many a horrible swimmer lives, who with the grace of God understood where he had to be in order not to perish in the cold water of sin. The Protestant “virtuous” man may fancy himself better able to face the cold water; he can, in fact, be undoubtedly the better swimmer. I do not doubt many of them are. But in the end, he is still there, swimming alone in the cold, whilst the awful swimmer was smart enough to stay or get on the boat. Many a virtuous swimmer will, therefore, perish; and many an awful one safely reach the other shore one day.
Ultimately, then, who is the more virtuous? Since when has it become virtuous to be a heretic? Invincible ignorance certainly excuses; but if we look around us we will see very little of it, and an awful lot of presumption and arrogance or, if you prefer, a lot of idiots who want to swim alone because they think they are too good for the Barque, which is so full of hideous sinners, or uncomfortable rules, or both.
At the end of the day Heretic is who heretic does, and heresy can never be good, or pleasing to God, or in any way desirable. It is not cruel or unreasonable that the Church refuses a Catholic funeral to those who die in their heresy. It would be cruel and unreasonable if she did otherwise, because in this case the Church Herself would set up to massively confuse the faithful about what is right and what is wrong.
What some priest – many, in fact – must understand is that Catholicism is neither easy nor comfortable. On the contrary, by its very nature it will cause the harsher conflicts where the commingling of Catholicism and Protestantism, or of Catholicism and Atheism, is more pronounced. I grew up in an environment deprived of even one single Protestant, and Catholic Truth about heresy never divided my family. But if in the middle of a family Catholicism and Protestantism mingle, then the Catholic Truth will perforce cut through it like a knife, or if you prefer like the above mentioned diamond cuts the lies of Protestant glass. Any attempt to reconcile the irreconcilable will, then, only water down the Truth, damaging – to little or great extent – the very Catholic members of that family; which, let it say it, is another reason why it is desirable that there be no Protestants among that family in the first place.
All very simple, very logical and very Catholic. But not if you depart from the straight and narrow, and start to reason about how oh pious the Protestants are, and how oh inflexible – generally one adds here “judgmental”, “self righteous” or another of the adjectives loved by those who have no argument – the orthodox Catholics.
To die a Protestant is a serious threat to one's eternal salvation. It is a threat that does not have to end in tragedy, but leaves one exposed to this risk. It is, besides, a scandal that encourages other to believe that it be allowed, even normal to die in one's heresy. And therefore, rightly and wisely the Church forbids that such people may have the Protestant cake and eat the Catholic funeral.
That V II priests seem unable to see such self-evident truths tells you a lot about your V II priests.
The Remnant website has the usual intelligent and very pertinent reflections about several issues also touched on this blog; but this time, the issues are seen in the light of the upcoming Synod, for which the preliminary liberal cannonade is now well and truly ongoing before the Great Offensive starts in October.
The Remnant has, at the end of the article, a petition to stop the synod in the first place.
I do not need to tell you that such initiatives are not relevant according to their probability of success, but according to the signal they send. “Without me”, is the signal that should be sent.
I invite you to follow the link, read the excellent article and sign the petition.
I am following, in the usual fashion (half terrified of the next bomb, half bored of the usual platitudes) Francis travel to Korea, where he is tirelessly promoting Francis and making clear he is not there to promote Christianity.
One issue in particular stroke me as odd, even for the man.
One day he laments that poverty is rising, whilst the rich get even richer. I do not know whence he has the figures and if he is every worried by facts, but this is what he said.
The day after he is on record with saying that poverty is a treasure.
Now: I was always told that poverty can certain help one to develop humility and avoid hell through that avenue. I am perfectly fine with that, and I think this corresponds to traditional Catholic thinking. But traditional Catholic thinking has also always been based on the serene acceptance that the poor will always be with us, that being poor is in itself no stairway to heaven, and that in the same way as poverty helps the poor to develop humility, wealth allows the wealthy to nourish their poverty in spirit, and to grow in charity. What counts is the humility, the poverty in spirit, the love of God. The arrogant poor, or the resentful poor, or the entitled poor, is certainly not on his way to anywhere for being poor; actually he runs the risk, if he allows his resentment to destroy charity, of being both poor and damned. Conversely, the rich who is poor in spirit and uses his wealth wisely is, in fact, well on his way to avoiding hell.
If this is correct – and I believe it is – we are in front of another example of Francis’ thinking: confused and resentful at the same time.
On the one hand, he never misses an occasion to bash the rich (the ones who are not his buddies, that is; his buddies can be very rich or even have private jets and it will be receiving, video-ing and high-fiving all round), showing that at the core of his social thinking is a resentment for the un-befriended wealthy that would do him honour in Moscow circa 1921, but not among Christians.
On the other hand, he seem to embrace a kind of sanctification of poverty at the same time as he condemns it. It does not make sense. The Church seeks to alleviate poverty, which means that poverty in itself – I mean here involuntary and not willingly embraced: the poverty of the poor and destitute, not the poverty of the monks and hermits – is not seen as anywhere near good. Which Francis also says, with one corner of his mouth. The other, as so often, disagrees.
Poverty that makes one suffer can’t be good in itself, but God can use everything to lead one to Him, even bad events and negative situations. Disease is the same. War, famine or bereavements too. But what Francis does is in my eyes nothing else than an attempt of sanctification of the poor – which is, as I get it, the underlying message, and the message he wants amplified by the press: “look how good you are: rejoice, because you are poor and therefore Christ’s favourites”) that is in the end nothing more than a bashing of the rich (“be afraid, because you are rich; unless you are buddies of mine, that is”) with the excuse of the poor.I never heard him say that those Countries who are at war have found a great collective treasure, either.
I never thought it a coincidence that among the beatitudes, poverty has the qualification ” in spirit”. The meek are blessed qua meek. The peacemakers are blessed qua peacemakers. The poor are, emphatically, not blessed qua (financially) poor. They are blessed only if, and because, they are humble. As are the rich, and those in between.
It seems to me that Francis has his gaze always firmly fixed on this earth, and that on this earth he has long-nourished resentments he now can freely vent, sure in the knowledge an army of sycophants will praise him for whatever he says from both corners of his mouth.
Even if they contradict each other.
I read somewhere that when in Canada the percentage of children born out-of-wedlock reached 40%, a magazine gave the news a cover with the rather politically incorrect title of “A Nation Of Bastards”, or the like. Of course, the fact is true, but it is very insensitive to say the truth, and therefore such inconvenient truths should be rather ignored in favour of inclusiveness and sensitivity.
Some days ago the same percentage for the UK was announced, and it was (by memory) north of 47%, certainly abundantly in the Forties.
Inconvenient truths come to mind as to what a nation this here is, but in the case of England at least another phenomenon certainly plays a role: Islam.
The Mohammedans are of the opinion that a husband must be able to ditch his wife rather easily if he thinks it fit. I suspect it even applies to the wife, though in this case the temptation must be somewhat less frequent and far less strong. Still, the Mohammedan idea of the sacredness of marriage clashes a lot with the very feminist praxis of the tribunals of these isles, which actually share the conviction that not even pre-nuptial agreements must be allowed to come between a woman and the half of the assets of her husband once the marriage has proven itself for a while. Therefore, the number is probably so high also because a substantial number of Muslim children are officially
bastards born out-of-wedlock, whilst unofficially they are the product of a stable marriage of the heathen kind; heathen, yes, but far more stable than many marriages of their once Christian counterparts.
Another evidence of this is in the frequency of the name Mohammed, now the most frequent child’s name in Britain.
Contrarily to what the article states this fact has been known for years now, but the fact still remains: no boy’s name is as popular as Mohammed, or one of its many variations.
Therefore, this is a Country of and more… children born out-of-wedlock, who are in non irrelevant part belonging to a religion that will make them carry rather thick beard, and of whom some are destined to become, at least in their aspirations – may their wish not come true – specialists in brutal killings.
A country of bastards, many of them with future beards, some of them aspiring to beheadings.
This is Britain in 2014.
Apparently, Pope Francis has made a “strong”, “silent statement” against abortion because he… stopped in front of a monument to aborted children in Korea. He even – we are told – “bowed his head in prayer” before the monument; which is rather big news because, as far as I know, it is more than he does in front of the Blessed Sacrament.
Again, it turns out this Pope is never weary of doing what is comfortable on the moment, provided he does not land in an uncomfortable position himself. Short of speaking sternly against abortion and become a clear target of the liberal masses from which he wants to be adored, he will do whatever it takes whenever it is convenient.
Hhmm…let us see…
Today is Saturday.
I wonder if I should not gather one or two buddies and go to Stringfellow’s, or to another such establishment where rather fetching professional strippers exercise their trade.
After which I could always “bow my head” before, say, the statue of Thomas More in Chelsea.
It would clearly be a “strong, silent statement” against strip clubs, wouldn’t it now?